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James O'Neil Lewis papers

Identifier: SC115

Scope and Contents

The collection which contains correspondence, documents, manuscripts and photographs, highlights various aspects of his career as a diplomat and public servant to Trinidad and Tobago. Dr. O'Neil Lewis took the opportunity to comment on many aspects of Trinidad and Tobago society inclusive of the constitution. Manuscripts for many of these are available in the papers.


  • 1945-2003

Biographical / Historical

J. "Scottie" O'Neil Lewis was born in Trinidad on 4th August 1919; he passed away in 2010. He was married to Jeanne nee Winter and fathered six children. He attended the Richmond Boys E.C. School and later went to the Queen's Royal College for his secondary education. He pursued tertiary education at the London University and Oxford University where he got Bachelors of Commerce and Letters respectively. In 1980 he gained a doctorate from the University of Amsterdam.

Dr. O'Neil Lewis started his professional career as a journalist with the Trinidad Guardian until 1950 when he migrated to England to pursue his studies. Upon his return to Trinidad and Tobago, he worked with the government service in various positions. It is to be noted that he was a member of the Trinidad and Tobago delegation which went to England at the Marlborough House meeting to seek independence for the nation.

He served as Ambassador to Belgium and the European Economic Commission 1973-1983 and Ambassador to the United States of America 1983-1987. He worked along with many national and regional agencies notably the Organization of American States, CARICOM, and in Trinidad and Tobago, the Integrity Commission, National Service Committee, 1990 Detention Review Tribunal for the coup detainees, Airports Authority, and the Industrial Court. He received an honourary doctorate from The University of the West Indies in 1997.


6 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



The papers are arranged into the following series: Correspondence, Committee Work, Ambassadorship, Subject files A-Z, Speeches and Essays A-Z; Reports A-Z; Trinidad and Tobago Cabinet Documents.

Custodial History

The collection was in the possession of the family and was donated to the Alma Jordan Library by Dr. O'Neil Lewis in 2003.

James O'Neil Lewis papers
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Repository Details

Part of the The Alma Jordan Library, The University of the West Indies Repository

St. Augustine
Trinidad and Tobago
868-662-2002 Ext 82132
868-662-9238 (Fax)